Painting with latex house paint

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oldguyflier

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Good stuff. I'm in the final stages of Thatcher CX4 build. Will prime with Glidden Gripper and apply (spraying) per Mr. Morrison's (Weiner Dog Aero) directions.
Can you still get Glidden Gripper? The replacement from PPG is NOT yhe same. Have had good (non aircraft) results with something called "KILZ Adhesion". Seems similar to the Gripper of old.
 

Vigilant1

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Also: Glidden Gripper is discontinued. Any equivalent item coming to mind?
The product formerly known as "Glidden Gripper' is now sold as " PPG Gripper." They claim it is the same stuff, apparently the brand rights/name were sold. I can get it at my local Home Depot and at my local Walmart.

Edited to add : Oops,I just saw oldflyer's post. I know the old Glidden site says the PPG product is the same. I haven't tried the new stuff.
 

rv7charlie

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Perhaps it's worth remembering that at least with finishing new fabric, the primer doesn't really stick to the fabric; it encapsulates the threads in the weave. That's the reason for using a roller and/or brush for the 1st couple of primer coats. So it would seem to me that if the primer has a good reputation for holding on to the top coat in 'normal' use, it ought to hold fairly well with fabric, too. Only potential issue I can think of would be whether it remains flexible. It would be surprising to me if any of the various *quality* acrylic primer brands would vary a lot on that factor.

Has anyone tried to contact the WDA guy to ask him? I'd suspect he would have an opinion I'd trust, and when I contacted him he was very willing to assist. (Hopefully, y'all can pick a spokesperson so he isn't overwhelmed by a dozen people asking the same questions at the same time.)
 

Wild Bill

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Years ago when I tried latex over fabric, I found the primer/paint didn’t cover very well at all.
The articles I read at the time seemed to favor omitting the silver coat in the covering process. Some said no, you need to do the silver coat. Others said the latex worked best applied directly to raw fabric, and the latex blocks UV.
I experimented with what was available locally. I used various brands and types of primers and paint.
None of it blocked light very well even with really heavy coats.
I never painted anything other than test samples. The flotrol works sort of, but the dry time increases. I used a 4” roller and brush. Spraying just didn’t seem to work well. I wonder how it would turn out with an airless sprayer.
 

rv7charlie

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There are lots of inaccurate an self-contradictory statements in the doc. It says that latex is made from acrylic, it says that acrylic dries faster and then says that latex dries 'extremely fast', it says that acrylic requires chemical cleanup, but all the acrylic house paints I've seen say 'soap & water cleanup'. Perhaps they consider soap a chemical?

If you click on the page's 'home' link, it appears to be a website for a local painting contractor; not a paint mfgr.
 

rv7charlie

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Years ago when I tried latex over fabric, I found the primer/paint didn’t cover very well at all.
The articles I read at the time seemed to favor omitting the silver coat in the covering process. Some said no, you need to do the silver coat. Others said the latex worked best applied directly to raw fabric, and the latex blocks UV.
I experimented with what was available locally. I used various brands and types of primers and paint.
None of it blocked light very well even with really heavy coats.
I never painted anything other than test samples. The flotrol works sort of, but the dry time increases. I used a 4” roller and brush. Spraying just didn’t seem to work well. I wonder how it would turn out with an airless sprayer.
How many years ago? What quality paint? All the premium quality 'latex' paints I've been able to find currently are actually acrylic paints. On the silver coat issue, when I did my research about those who used the process successfully on fabric, they all used the acrylic primers and paints from beginning to end on new fabric. Further on the silver issue, it's not about blocking light, per se, but blocking UV. Consider the dozens of sunscreen products on the market; very few of them end up anything except clear on your skin, yet some of the better ones can 'sun proof' your skin all day long with one application (as long as you don't wash it off). If you look at the MSDS of the exterior acrylics, you'll find a very high titanium dioxide content. The link might be worth a read.

Bummer that you didn't have any luck with the sprayer. I had excellent results, by following the recommendations on the WDA & other sites for tools and thinning of the paint. As I mentioned earlier, my only prior spraying experience was using an airless sprayer to paint the fiber-cement siding on my house. One big difference was not needing to thin the paint; another was how fast the commercial grade airless sprayer could go through a 5gal bucket of paint. I wouldn't want to use an airless sprayer on an a/c, for the same reason I wouldn't want to do the color coats with a roller or brush; too much weight from the excessively thick coats.
 

Mig29fuk

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Re. Latex and rolling onto the required surface and cover. Although weight has been mentioned in some of the responses, no actual factual weight differences has been mentioned. I'm a simple Country Boy and on painting my aircraft in latex applied this simple measure.
The paint has weight in the unopened tIn..... If you weigh it, apply the contents, then the heaviest the weight will be is a full cans weight.
Add to that that the latex paints are water based so evaporation is part of the process with consequential weight reduction.
With an Aircraft with unladen weight of say 750 pounds before painting the addition of paint weighing 15 lbs 'wet' is a small percentage of eventual all up weight. Unless weight is super critical such as a Part 103 then weight penalty is not much difference as a percentage of weight.
Latex painting with a suitable small roller works well and gives acceptable finish, especially on older rag and tube aircraft.
Hope nobody objects to this simple appraisal.
Kind Regards
Gerry
 

Wild Bill

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How many years ago? What quality paint? All the premium quality 'latex' paints I've been able to find currently are actually acrylic paints. On the silver coat issue, when I did my research about those who used the process successfully on fabric, they all used the acrylic primers and paints from beginning to end on new fabric. Further on the silver issue, it's not about blocking light, per se, but blocking UV. Consider the dozens of sunscreen products on the market; very few of them end up anything except clear on your skin, yet some of the better ones can 'sun proof' your skin all day long with one application (as long as you don't wash it off). If you look at the MSDS of the exterior acrylics, you'll find a very high titanium dioxide content. The link might be worth a read.
This was approx 8 years ago. I used the zinnser primer, behr and Coronado premium water based paints. I also tried some type of high solids stain blocking primer.
colors were, white, yellow and blue. Also used black and flat black as a base blocking coat.
My concern was not about the uv coming through the paint.
I didn’t care for the way it looked. On a tube built open structure like a rudder, you could hold it up to the light and see the shadow of your hand on the other side. You could also see tape/glue seams, heavy/light areas of paint, runs on the back side of the fabric. It looked awful.
I remember how good it looked in the shop or outside on a cloudy day, looking through it in bright sun was unimpressive.
I would have been been really disappointed if I painted a whole wing or fuselage and this been the end result.
I’ve seen a couple of challengers at an event that were painted with house paint. You could look up through the bottom of the wings and see the sun along with every brush stroke and imperfection.
I guess some people don’t mind the lampshade look, I didn’t care for it though.
Attached is a example of what I’m trying to describe. Not a great picture but notice how you can see the structure of the elevator through the fabric.
 

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rv7charlie

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Hi Gerry,

Apologies if I came across as criticizing your methods; that wasn't my intent. Pretty much everything about building an a/c is a compromise of some sort. My choice of compromises ended up being biased to using the sprayer. When I painted the Kolb, I weighed the wings uncovered, after covering, and then after finish painting. One wing weighed 33.14 bare, 36.9 after cover, and 40.14 after paint. I didn't weigh the entire airframe before/after paint, but I suspect that total weight gain was a bit more than 15 lbs. I wish I'd weighed between the rolled-on primer and the sprayed finish, but I didn't. I'm confident that if *I'd* rolled on the finish coats, the wing would have gained more than 4 lbs. (And I wouldn't have been able to make it look as good as the sprayed finish.) It's not about a gallon of paint weighing what a gallon of paint weighs, it's about how much of that paint is on each square foot of surface. If I'd rolled mine, I'm confident that the paint film thickness would have been greater (less coverage per gallon), and therefore the plane would have weighed more.

Wild Bill,

Bummer that it didn't work out for you. IIRC, my wings were opaque after just the Glidden primer coats, and they're certainly opaque after spraying the yellow finish coats.

Charlie
 

opcod

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The weight aspect is way too look at. People don't build sport e-racer, just having something to fly. We see one who build a jodel and he even haven't properly sand the wing and apply cheap house paint over it. Yes it fly and we just smile to see that. If someone spend like 2-4 yrs to build a bird and want to have it look 'trash' it's a strange choice. But i supposed it's the same people who buy HomeDepot bolt .. just to save few cent. All in all we will never get into that plane and never buy it used.
 

Pops

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Has anyone ever seen a Home Depot bolt on an airplane ? Or is it just an old wife's tale ?
 

rv7charlie

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There was a homebuilt biplane at SNF years ago; the owner asserted that everything, including the engines, was bought at Home Depot.
 
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ToddK

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I would also add, that for a slightly firmer and less spongy surface, you can use the Stewart systems primer. It’s not expensive. I have also considered experimenting with adding marble dust to the second coat of gripper to firm it up just a bit.
 
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Pops

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I have. Well it was actually a helicopter.
Zero there, with starting to help working on airplanes since 15 years old and that's 66 years ago.
 

TFF

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Square nuts and everything. The shark slash 12” split in the sheet metal was more worry some that it had been flying with.
 

Pops

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Square nuts and everything. The shark slash 12” split in the sheet metal was more worry some that it had been flying with.
Crazy, self culling the herd.
 

TFF

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He had money too.

I have seen some strange homebuilt airplane fixes. Big hardware store turnbuckle used as an adjustable bracket in the engine compartment. Telephone wire. Trailer tail light wire for strobes. I have one buddy that I don’t look too close. Not planning to go fly in any of his. He isn’t either. He being 90 has some safety factors built in.
 

Wanttaja

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I actually have lots of Home Depot/Lowe's parts on my Fly Baby. Most of it is non-structural, or is so overdesigned that the source of the material is immaterial.

My battery box is made from Lowe's wood (oak, in fact), the frame for the pilot seat, and any number of stainless steel screws used to hold things on.

Ron Wanttaja
 
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